Hope Street has made a submission to the Parliamentary Inquiry into Homelessness in Victoria in which we bring to the fore the issues of most concern for young people and young families who are experiencing homelessness in Victoria.
Hope Street interviewed and consulted with current and previous Hope Street clients, and their Case Managers, to capture their voices and opinions on how Victoria can best respond to youth homelessness. Overwhelmingly, the most pressing feedback we received from young people is that youth homelessness requires a specialist response that is different to the response required by the general homeless population. In the absence of youth-specific responses, young people are often missing out on resources and falling through the gaps. Young people also require homelessness services to be available in their own communities, not only centralized in Melbourne city.
The following key recommendations, formed on evidence-based program models that deliver positive and life changing outcomes for young people and young families who are at risk of or experiencing homelessness, were put forward in Hope Street's submission:
- Increase the number of purpose-designed specialist youth refuges in growth corridors, including funding Hope Street’s First Response Youth Service in the City of Whittlesea and the City of Hume (at a cost of $4.8 million capital and $2.3 million operating expenses per annum);
- Increase the number of Hope Street foyer-like models of supported transitional housing for young people in growth corridors;
- Provide youth-specific supported private rental assistance programs in growth corridors, including funding Hope Street’s Hope to Home program in the City of Whittlesea and the City of Melton (at a cost of $2.8 million over three years); and
- Establish a quota of community housing properties specifically for young people and young families.
Read the full submission
Hope Street is grateful to the Parliamentary Legal and Social Issues Committee for this opportunity to make a submission to this Inquiry into Homelessness in Victoria. Every young Victorian needs a safe and secure home and we believe that the recommendations put forward in our submission, if adopted and enabled by the Victorian Government, have the potential to make a significant dent in the youth homelessness endemic.